By Vaelei Walkden-Brown
On behalf of the Penticton and District Community Arts Council I would like to introduce our new bimonthly column Arts Matter. As the new Executive Director of the arts council I look forward to sharing this column with our current Vice President, Timothy Tweed.
Our goal with this column is to share our ongoing updates with you, tell you the stories of our members, artists and colleagues and inspire commentary on the ever evolving state of the arts and why arts matter.
The old adage says “united we stand” — and as the Penticton Arts Council evolves, we have a renewed focus on uniting the local arts community. In my short time in this community I have come to know the richness and diversity of the creative people here. There are many people doing great things in the visual arts, music, performing arts, photography and even a budding film community. What is lacking though is a strong, unified voice for these artists, a voice that is easily heard and recognizable.
We want the voice of this arts community to inspire, to heal, to entice, to celebrate. With the wide array of galleries, arts organizations, teachers, performers, etc., there is so much potential for the culture of this city to shine. What the arts do for a community is offer a depth and vibrancy that does not come so strongly through other avenues. Artists are a unique breed. They are moved to create by a deep, passionate drive – they create because they must. It is about giving voice to the muse inside. When this voice is heard the mundane borders of our day to day existence start to dematerialize and we can glimpse something that would be intangible, had it not been formed into a painting, a song or a dance.
Our current state of the arts in Penticton is wonderful… but somewhat muted. It is time to turn up the volume! On behalf of the Penticton Arts Council and the creative community of our city, I welcome you to participate in this dialogue about why arts matter. You can get involved by checking out our beautiful art galleries, heading out to listen to some local music, see a live performance or take a class or workshop and let your creativity flow.
The PDCAC Annual General Meeting will take place at the Leir House on Monday, October 24th. You’re welcome to join us there and meet myself and our Board of Directors and find out how you can be part of the creative growth that is happening right now. In the meantime, watch out for these hashtags: #artsmatter #stateofthearts — we’ve got some great surprises in store that will set your inner muse free!
Vaelei Walkden-Brown is the Executive Director at the Penticton and District Community Arts Council.
She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. For upcoming city wide arts events follow the Penticton Arts Council’s Facebook page.